More Than 2.6 Million Voters Registered: Tigray Election Commission

By Staff Reporter

Tigray-Region-CouncilAugust 28, 2020 (Ezega.com) -- More than 2.6 million people have been registered as eligible voters to take part in the upcoming election scheduled to take place on September 9, 2020, in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, the region’s election commission has announced.

The number of people registered for the election is reported as the highest ever, said Muluwork Kidanenariam, Tigray Election Commissioner.

The commission concluded voters’ registration effective on Thursday but according to the commissioner those voters, who could not make it for the last five days, can get registered over the coming weekend.

The federal government in March this year postponed parliamentary and regional elections scheduled for August due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

A new date has yet to be set, but according to the house of the federation, the 6th national elections will be held after the COVID-19 pandemic becomes no more a health threat.

The Tigray People’s Liberation Front, the region’s governing party, split acrimoniously from the national Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) coalition last year when its three other parties merged to form the new Prosperity Party.

The TPLF said it would proceed with elections in Tigray despite the nationwide postponement of voting.

The commissioner said it was compulsory for those people coming to the registration centers to wear face masks and wash their hands.

Tigray reported more than 2500 confirmed cases of coronavirus, becoming the fourth worst-hit region in the country.

The regional government has made 2000 voting stations readily available and more than 60 representatives of different social groups including civic associations, members of Tigrayan Nationals Associations in North America and religious institutions will observe the election.

It is not yet clear if international organizations will observe the election.

Five political parties including TPLF will be competing in the controversial Tigray election. Opposition parties claimed that TPLF has forgotten the people of Tigray during its 27-year long stay in power.

Some of the competing parties namely Baitona, Salsawi Weyane, and Wnat announced plans for cessation while TPLF and Asimba aimed otherwise.

Out of 11 individual candidates, six of them withdrew from the election last week for undisclosed reasons.

Meanwhile, TPLF dismissed reports by the neighboring Amhara region that 60 members of Tigray Special force deserted to the Amhara region, characterizing the report as “a bull gives birth to a calf.”

The Amhara regional government Communication Affairs director-general told the BBC Amharic that 60 armed members of the Tigray special force deserted to Amhara regional state along with their weapons.

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